Creative classroom management strategies from fellow teachers and our experts.
I have an extensive collection of frogs of all shapes, sizes, colors, and materials that students have given me. I write the student’s name and date on each. I have about 15 years’ worth of frogs, and every time I look at one, a student’s face comes to mind.
Queen Of Hearts
I save all of the Valentine’s Day cards I’ve been given and use them as bulletin board borders.
My partner teacher keeps a folder of pictures, drawings, and class photos for every school year. She brings the folder to graduation to show students memories they had forgotten. The kids love that she keeps their things, and they love seeing the old class photos. I’ve decided to steal her idea!
I make capes [from used school T-shirts] and donate them to a classroom with little kids. I cut off the sleeves and either the front or the back of the T-shirt, and then cut up the side seams, while keeping the collar intact.
Every year, I have a small bulletin board called “The Wall of Awesomeness,” where I collect drawings, paintings, poems, and other great work by students. At the end of the year, I take the finest examples and put them in a Trapper Keeper to save. Kids love looking at the old works, and it motivates that year’s students to share their best with me.
I take pictures and use different websites to create a book for each year’s memories. I include the notes and drawings I get, as well as some of my favorite pictures from that year.
I create collages with school memorabilia and put the pages in a binder. When I start to question my choice of professions, I leaf through the binder. It helps remind me why I’m in it: for the children.
Fits to a T
I make pillows from old [school] T-shirts to use in a reading area.
Check It Out
I have a “love notes” binder that I keep in my class library. Every year I create a new folder. The students love seeing everything that’s been given to me!
Photos: Shutterstock (Paper Frogs); Thinkstock (Plastic Frogs)
The complete collection of articles, lesson ideas, print-ready resources, and more.